Patty Judge named to Iowa Women's Hall of Fame

Congratulations are in order to former Lieutenant Governor and Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Patty Judge, one of four women to be inducted to the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame at the State Historical Building on August 24. The Iowa Commission on the Status of Women selects four women for the honor each year. You can read about all the hall of famers here.

After the jump I’ve posted an excerpt from the commission’s announcement, including short bios of Judge and the three other inductees for 2013: Dr. Mary Louise Sconiers Chapman, a superstar advocate for vulnerable populations; Barbara Mack, a journalism legend who passed away last year; and Dr. Deborah Ann Turner, who has advocated for education and social justice as an attorney as well as a medical doctor.

This year’s winner of the Iowa Commission on the Status of Women’s Cristine Wilson Medal for Equality and Justice is Sharon Malheiro, founder and board president of the LGBT advocacy group One Iowa. As an attorney, Malheiro has represented employers in several important workplace discrimination cases as well as being involved in Iowa’s most notable court cases relating to marriage equality. Her short bio is after the jump as well. You can view the list of past Cristine Wilson Medal recipients here. Governor Terry Branstad won in 1999, shortly after he retired from politics.

From the Iowa Commission on the Status of Women’s August 14 news release:

Dr. Mary Louise Sconiers Chapman

Dr. Mary Louise Sconiers Chapman’s relentless dedication to underrepresented and underserved Iowans has opened the door for many to obtain previously limited resources in the areas of continued education, economic advancement and housing. Chapman joined Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) in 1990 and was the first woman to serve as an executive dean at the college. She went on to become the vice president of community and workforce partnerships. Through her work at DMACC, Chapman has created programs for women and at-risk youth, including the establishment of face-to-face college credit programs for the inmates at the Iowa Correctional Institution for Women in Mitchellville; engineered strategic partnerships to support Des Moines Public Schools’ Teacher Quality Program, which successfully placed dozens of minority teachers in Des Moines; and worked to develop the Evelyn K. Davis Center for Working Families in Des Moines, a first-of-its-kind, community-based, integrated service delivery partnership between education, business and community that connects families and individuals with education, support services, career pathways and employment. She has served dozens of community and statewide boards and other civic organizations, including chair of the Iowa Civil Rights Commission and past president of both – The Links, Inc. and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. She is the recipient of many awards, including the Young Women’s Resource Center Visionary Woman Award, The YWCA Women of Achievement Award, Iowa African American Hall of Fame and the Iowa Commission on the Status of African Americans’ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Achievement Award. She was born in Chancellor, Alabama, in 1948 and has lived in Des Moines for 44 years.

Patty Jean Poole Judge

Born in Ft. Madison in 1943 and raised in Albia, Iowa, Patty Jean Poole Judge began her career in Albia as a registered nurse and as a partner with her husband in a Monroe County farming operation. She purchased her parents’ real estate business in the early 1980s. As she built the business, Judge became aware of the looming farm crisis. She soon began helping hundreds of farm families and their creditors find solutions to financial troubles through the Iowa Farmer Creditor Mediation Service, which led her to be a strong advocate for rural families. Active both in her community and throughout southern Iowa, Judge was elected to the Iowa Senate in 1992 and re-elected in 1996. In 1998, she became the first woman elected Iowa Secretary of Agriculture and was re-elected in 2002. During her administration renewable energy grew to become an integral part of Iowa’s economy, new international markets for agricultural products were developed, Iowa’s wine industry began to flourish and the swine disease ‘Pseudorabies’ was eradicated from Iowa hog herds. In 2006, Judge was elected Iowa’s Lieutenant Governor, serving with Governor Chet Culver. During her term in office she also served the state as the Homeland Security Advisor and was instrumental in coordinating critical response operations during the historic floods of 2008. While in office she worked to create a task force designed to address issues of racial disparity in Iowa prisons, took a critical look at gender gap in wages and championed the expansion of the state’s children’s health insurance program and wellness programs. Since leaving the state capitol in January 2011, Judge has created a consulting company and has assisted many candidates in their bids for elected office.

Barbara Marie Mack

Barbara Marie Mack was a journalist, lawyer and teacher who shattered glass ceilings, inspired women and gave generously to many people throughout her life. Born in Des Moines in 1952, she put herself through college in just three years, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree with Phi Beta Kappa academic honors in journalism from Iowa State University in 1974. Long before college, Mack was at home in a newsroom. She started as a copy courier at age 16 with the Des Moines Register and Tribune, then rose to reporter after graduation, blazing a trail for Register women covering courts and crime news. From those earliest days, she was passionate about First Amendment issues. She helped found the Iowa Freedom of Information Council in 1975. Her growing interest in the law drew her to Drake University Law School, where she received her Juris Doctor in 1977. By 1982, at age 29, Mack became the Register and Tribune Company’s first female corporate secretary and general counsel, making her the highest-ranking woman in Register corporate history and its youngest executive. After overseeing the sale of the company to Gannett interests, she was counsel at the Davis Law Firm briefly before returning to Iowa State University as a professor in journalism and mass communications. While at ISU, she taught classes ranging from basic to advanced and was a teacher, academic advisor, mentor and role model for thousands of students over a 25-year career; but Mack also made it a personal priority to tutor students who needed to pass the fundamental language usage exam required for entry into the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communications. She died in 2012, mourned by family, friends and those many students who have taken her lessons to heart. Her legacy is a generation of young people, particularly women, poised to have positive impacts on Iowa and on the world beyond.

Deborah Ann Turner

While growing up in Mason City, Dr. Deborah Ann Turner often heard her mother say, “There is only one race: the human race.” And her father always told her, “I never met a stranger.” Turner has lived by those words since her birth in 1950. Turner was the first African-American woman to integrate a sorority at Iowa State University, be certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the specialty of gynecologic oncology and be hired as a gynecological oncologist at the University of Nebraska, University of Iowa and Medical College of Wisconsin. In 2000, Turner moved to Des Moines and became director of gynecologic oncology at Mercy Cancer Center, where she currently continues her practice. At that time Turner decided she could have greater impact on health policies, as well as education and social justice issues, if she had a law degree. So she studied nights and weekends to obtain a Juris Doctorate degree, all the while maintaining her medical practice. In addition to making contributions in her field of medicine, Turner has made civic responsibility a high priority, including on the Iowa Board of Regents, where she served until 2005 (while simultaneously pursuing her law degree), and as vice president of the League of Women Voters of Iowa and president for the Metro League of Women Voters in Des Moines. She continues to educate as a clinical professor at Des Moines University Medical School and as adjunct clinical faculty at the University of Iowa. She has expanded her medical mission to work in Tanzania with Outreach, Inc., a nondenominational non-governmental organization out of Union, Iowa. She has found this work rewarding and humbling; however, her greatest commitment is to her son Daniyel and niece Danielle.

2013 Cristine Wilson Medal for Equality and Justice

Sharon Malheiro

Sharon Malheiro has worked tirelessly for civil rights in Iowa, leading the campaign for marriage equality in the state. As a senior shareholder at the Davis Brown Law Firm, she practices in the areas of employment law, including employment discrimination, litigation and corporate employment policies and practices, as well as media and communication law. In 1991, Malheiro was appointed by the Iowa Supreme Court to serve as a member of the Task Force on Gender and Racial Bias in the Judicial System. After the completion of the Task Force’s report, she was asked to serve as a member of the Iowa Supreme Court’s Monitoring Committee, which was charged with ensuring that the recommendations made by the Task Force were implemented. In 2003, Malheiro acted as co-counsel for Alons v. Woodbury County, which upheld a district court decision dissolving the Vermont civil union of a same-sex couple. In 2009, she served as an expert witness in Varnum v. Brien, a landmark case that declared the Iowa Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. Additionally, Malheiro served as co-counsel in Gartner v. Iowa Department of Public Health, which ruled Iowa parents in same-sex marriages must be allowed to have both of their names listed on their child’s birth certificate, consistent with Iowa’s spousal presumption of parentage. Malheiro founded One Iowa in 2005, a statewide organization seeking full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Iowans, and currently chairs the One Iowa board. She also provides pro bono legal counsel for Aids Project of Central Iowa and is one of the cooperating attorneys for Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund.

  • Patty Judge

    Thank you for posting this.  As a more “conservative” Democrat I would have been very excited to see Patty elected as Governor in 2006, but I think Culver’s Administration could have had more stumbling blocks without Patty.  

  • Patty Always With Us

    I’m reminded daily of how Patty Judge has changed Iowa.  All I have to do is open the window and smell the hog lots.  She championed the bill that made it illegal for us to even sue the stinkers who replaced the smell of newly mowed hay with the smell of manure pits as the dominant odor in rural Iowa.

    Though that law was later overturned in court, the game was over.  The number of Iowa hog farmers plummeted as the hogs all came to be owned by the absentee corporations whose money men poured cash into Judge’s later campaigns for higher office.

    It’s quite a legacy.  She stumbled to a second term as Ag Secretary whining that her opponents were fringe folks, when in fact they merely couldn’t stand the smell of Iowa.  Just this week another farmer told me he had gone “over to the dark side,” reluctantly putting up a 2400 head building so as to be able to stay in the hog business.  Judge belongs in the Hall of Infamy.

  • Points on a Compass

    C’mon dsmdem…give it to us…let us hear it…the famous Patty Judge response to environmentalists who might want to…oh, I don’t know…have a little clean water and enjoy a little fresh air….it’s a great quote, from this “Hall of Fame” award winner….she never met a hog she didn’t like. To put her on the same list as the late, great Barb Mack is terrible…..

    • Ha!

      Yes, because it is that simple of a debate people that want clean air and water versus those people who don’t.  Conservatives, moderate and companies want us to get cancer and die.  Only liberals, progressives and environmentalists want us to live.

      Rockm, your arguments are usually deep and thoughtful.  

    • here you go

      by popular demand, this is Francis Thicke speaking in 2007:

      “A few days ago, it became clearer to me where at least part of the Culver/Judge administration is coming from. I spoke with one of my neighbors who is proposing to build a 4,800-hog confinement about a mile and a half upwind from me. When I talked to him about it he said Patty Judge is his ‘champion’ and the reason he is planning on going through with this in spite of the objections of his neighbors. He said Patty Judge told him that Iowa is an agricultural state and anyone who doesn’t like it can leave in any of four directions.”

  • Sorry

    I will give PJ some love for running the trains on time when The Lug was MIA during the first two + years of his administration.  But with her environmental record, or lack of same, I certainly don’t think she belongs on any HOF list. Just MHO. Like many people, I’m losing patience with those fouling our air, land and water. Politicians committed to the status quo will soon find themselves on the outside, looking in. Even in a farm state like Iowa.  

    • Solving nothing

      The Lug?  Again, another sign of civility.   Every single industry in the history of the human race has fouled up the air, land and water.  If we’re going to be using hyperbole here we might as well blame the entire human race.  

      I agree with you that large farming operations ruin the environment.  Instead of carrying signs and screaming, environmentalists should actually fund clean energy projects so there isn’t so much poverty in our rural communities.  Why actually try to solve the problem when you can just blame corporate America and pass the buck on to DHS?  Or just telling the kids to move to the city, thus leaving more of an opportunity for large corporations to buy up farmland.    

      The Lug huh?  I’m guessing you were a Fallon voter, could be wrong.  

      • Blaming the victim

        “environmentalists should actually fund clean energy projects”, you say?  Is it up to environmentalists alone?  Don’t you notice any opposition from those who benefit from the status quo?

        And you also think corporations buy up the land merely because farm kids have just moved to the city?  Could you have cause and effect mixed up?  Could it be that corporations have deeper pockets and better tax lawyers than the average farm kid?  Plus they got Patty Judge.

        • Judge

          Di I say that environmentalists should do it alone?  No,

          Corporations do have deeper pocket, yes they can purchase more land.  Kids don’t want anything to do with the profession anymore, they’d rather be the next Steve Jobs.  Sure, corporate interests buy a ton of land at unfair rate, but 1/10 kids is even interested in farming, so I guess we should just leave farmland barren?  Fine with me I guess.

          This is all about mandates and forcing sustainable agriculture on people, don’t take it on Patty Judge just because you don’t get a true leftist (I’m sure you would just say Judge is a corporate hack as ag secretary)  Patty would gladly sign on to a  bill in support of public financing of elections in order to get corporate money out of agricultural elections.  

          That wouldn’t likely solve a single thing when it comes to which entity controls the farm land, but if it makes CCI and other group warm and funny inside, go for it.  

          God knows (figure of speech) we will have to suffer through our third straight wonderful Ag Secretary nominee here in Iowa.  

      • environmentalists

        are supporting a lot of sustainable ag and clean energy projects all over Iowa. But they don’t have the resources to compete with big ag.

        • Agreed

          I agree and never meant to imply otherwise  Chanting, sign waving, questioning projects when you have no immediate alternative economic development idea is so much fun though. I know alternative energy projects take time, but if an employer in dirty energy offers me a job and I need a paycheck, I am going to take it.  I don’t need some activist from a community with four percent unemployment or (around that number) telling me not to work there and be involved in their “cause.”  

          You’re not going to solve the lack of younger, smaller farmers in the state unless you can get them interested in agriculture again.

          I understand and embrace urban farming projects as well, but the Democratic Party isn’t going to solve this problem as  

          • Disregard last sentence

          • Status Quo Forever

            The view you are expressing, however, ensures that nothing ever changes. If the state ends up with nothing left but 10 corporate farms each owning the acreage of 10 counties, there aren’t a lot of opportunities for the next generation whether they are interested or not.  And if that younger generation doesn’t believe in manure lagoons the size of Saylorville, or drugging up all of cattle, where do they turn?  

            We will always have corporate ag, and that is fine — they feed much of the world and do so efficiently.  But we have to make fundamental changes to the economics of farming so that other approaches are equally viable.  And that will require electing politicians who are not like Patty.  Eliminating subsidies that make the rich even richer and which favor monocultures and heavy use of chemicals and the production of unhealthy foods is a good start.  Requiring strong mandatory watershed protection is another.  Working as a state to use state resources and programs to add value to diverse, sustainable and family-scale crops (Iowa used to grow a lot more than corn and beans – it used to be a producer of not only other grains but of many fruits) would help.

            But just saying “well, people need jobs so we have to sell out the long term for the short term” only ensures things continue to get worse without end.  Especially when that involves shaping the rules to please the same companies that keep putting people out of work.  Maybe it would help the unemployed more if we tried something different for once – like helping small farms create jobs instead of helping larger owners consolidate and need fewer of them.  

            • Fair

              I’m a pretty conservative guy and somewhat of a fatalist on environmentalist issues.  Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” made me more conservative, not more critical of the United States’ environmental record.

              “If the state ends up with nothing left but 10 corporate farms each owning the acreage of 10 counties, there aren’t a lot of opportunities for the next generation whether they are interested or not.  And if that younger generation doesn’t believe in manure lagoons the size of Saylorville, or drugging up all of cattle, where do they turn?   ”  Invest, getting involved by doing more than screaming.  Busing people in from around the state that may or may not know anything about agriculture or not.

              I would be lying if I said I didn’t have pure hatred running through my veins for most of the environmental movement.

              My community has been depressed since the 1970s, we vote for labor Democrats, we take your hand outs and hope for a better day that never comes.  We’ve sacrificed waiting for the utopia.  

              ” Maybe it would help the unemployed more if we tried something different for once – like helping small farms create jobs instead of helping larger owners consolidate and need fewer of them.”  Line people up, find the land and let them work on the farm.  Stop with the bullshit propaganda.  I am somewhat comfortable with the status quot in the sense that I know if a true leftist took office it would just lead to more fines for small farms and no net gain in the number of farmers in the state.  

              Patty let people buy farms that would have been vacant in most cases otherwise.  I’m not defending corporations, I want people to do something more than organize.  They have to try to purchase land.  


              • small-scale farming

                keeps more people on the land and creates more jobs, keeping more money circulating in the local economy compared to the conventional ag model as practiced on the majority of Iowa farms today. In many cases the profit per acre is higher too, although it would be even better if government supported the more sustainable model.

      • Not a Fallon voter

        But he’s starting to look better and better.

        • I was a Fallon voter

          and I voted for the Green Party candidate for secretary of agriculture in 2002, and after the 2006 primary, I went out of my way to get the Culver bumper sticker that didn’t have Patty Judge’s name on it.

          But I still say Judge belongs in the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame. She has been one of the most influential Iowa women of my lifetime.

          • Honesty

            That’s the difference between you and some of the other folks on here.  Patty doesn’t really lie about her record when it comes to agriculture, she’s a Democrat and not a Green Party member as well.  Some people here vote for a Dem and then expect a Green Party agenda.

            We could trade arguments all day about what the role of an Ag Secretary is as well.  I dispute the fact that Patty or anyone else is really suppose to block the legal sale of land.

            I dispute the fact that the biggest issue in agriculture is corporate ownership as well, if people were really interested in the average age of a farmer wouldn’t be sixty seven or whatever it is.  I’ve heard different numbers on that question.  

            We spar on Boswell, Judge and a number of other people, but at least at the end of the day you bring honesty to the equation dmd.

    • I share your view of her environmental record

      but clearly she has been one of the most influential women in Iowa politics, and for that reason belongs on this list.

      This isn’t the progressive hall of fame.

      • TIME Cover Person of The Year

        This conversation reminds me of the folk who while really not understanding the concept of that “award”, nonetheless grouse that the person named is/was a jerk and doesn’t deserve the “award”.  

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